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Topics - djemily

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Stage Management: Other / Il Trittico
« on: Feb 06, 2008, 02:52 am »
Hi everyone!

I just accepted a job as an ASM for the El Paso Opera. We will be doing Il Trittico [like the title... :)]. Anyway, this will be my first opera, but I have plenty of straight plays and musicals under my belt. I have read all the posts about the differences between opera and other types of theatre. I read music and speak and read/write Spanish and English. I plan on learning Italian, primarily because I want to expand my stage management to any area that I can, plus I love learning languages :)

Has anyone done this show? In my Google search I learned that the approx. run time is 4 hours. And I know about the 3 acts. Any helpful information? They still haven't signed a SM yet, so hopefully once they do I can talk to him/her and find out exactly what they'll be having me do. I pick up my script in the morning. Any advice about this show?

Thanks in advance. I hope everyone is having a great 2008 so far!


Tools of the Trade / Flash Pots
« on: Jun 10, 2007, 07:29 pm »
Hi All,

My director has decided that he would like to use flash pots for our current production of The Secret Garden. We are in an outdoor venue and I'm contacting the fire marshal this week to find out if we are allowed to do it. Does anyone have any recommendations. There will be at least 4 needed per show, and we have 11 shows, so I would like them to not be the disposable kind. We also don't have much money to spend on them, but I want them quality so that people don't get hurt, and they go off when they're supposed to. What I'm looking for is brand suggestions, any help?

Thanks in advance!!

So, the problem is this. I'm doing two shows for a new company in my town. Our amphitheatre is completely open, and it's always windy here. Yesterday they were loading in the first set of the season (not one of my shows) and one of the set pieces was on it's wagon and just blew right off the edge of the stage, into the orchestra pit. When I was talking to the other SM (who is also an actor) about why this happened he told me that last year they would literally be riding the barn from Oklahoma! across the stage while acting. The wagons don't have breaks and the stage "floor" is solid cement so we can't screw them down. They try to hold the set pieces in place with wedges and sandbags. My question is, when it comes to my shows, should I fight for breaks on the wagons for safety or is this a battle that I shouldn't start at risk of offending the set designer/TD? And, how should I bring this up? Should I wait for my show or should I try to convince the other SM to fight it too?

I'm about to go into techs on To Kill a Mockingbird. Aside from all of the other issues that we've come across on this show, my director just stepped on my last nerve. This whole process she's acted like she doesn't need me and has pretty much handled things herself, including calling breaks (when we decided that this would be MY job) and releasing the cast after rehearsals when I'm standing right next to her with a list of announcements (and then I look like a jerk going "wait a second, I have some things to say too"). This is a big production, and I know that she's overwhelmed and that's double the reason to let me do my job. This is what got my last nerve- Earlier today she came over to me and said "It looks like [your ASM] is having trouble giving lines and taking line notes at the same time, maybe you two should split that up,"  as if I don't have a thousand other things to do right now. I know that I don't look busy, but trying to keep this production together is a lot of work, and most of the cast hates me because of HER scheduling fiascoes, so I'm trying to make sure that the tech schedule is clear and that the cast knows I can handle things once we get there. I don't want to start a fight with her and I don't even feel like it's worth it to try to "fix" things with her at this point in time.

Does this happen in "the real world" as far as directors trying to tell us SMs how to do our jobs?

I use card stock for my script and I have a problem with the back of the pages get smudgy from the copied page behind it. I don't know if this has something to do with the paper itself or if it's just the toner in the copier. It erases, but that's a pain and very time consuming. And on top of that, it's a little annoying writing blocking on less than perfect paper. Has anyone else run into this problem? Is there anything I can do to prevent it? Thoughts?

Employment / Non-equity contract question
« on: Mar 02, 2007, 03:57 pm »
I'm not equity and that's why this is in here instead of Hardline. I GOT A JOB!!! It's for the summer, doing musicals in an amphitheatre, and I don't know any details yet. My question is, I know some of you have people sign contracts when you get hired. Could I possibly see one or get some suggestions about what should go in it?

Thanks a ton :)


I just found out that I will be having an ASM for the show I am working on. I hear she works hard and will help me out a lot. I'm working on To Kill a Mockingbird and we start rehearsals on Tuesday. What I'm wondering is, aside from a script, contact sheets, etc. what else should I ask her to put in her prompt book? Of course I have everything I can think of in mine right now, but what do you guys usually require your ASMs to have with them at all times?

How much time do you typically spend actually preparing for rehearsals and production meetings and stuff before it all happens. I'm doing a show in the fall and we won't start rehearsals until like september. I already have the script and what I'm wondering is am I right in thinking that I should start laying things out and start on my prompt book and getting paperwork ready for the actors and stuff? This is a college black box production and also my first show to SM from start to finish by myself. Any suggestions would be terrific. Thank you!!!


Students and Novice Stage Managers / Artistry: script analysis
« on: Jun 01, 2006, 10:58 pm »
Hey guys! I'm taking a Script Analysis class at school because it is required for my theatre minor. I was just wondering if any of you actually use the techniques we will be learning. Aka breaking down the script (other than scene breakdowns) into structures and stuff like that. (sorry I'm beng so vague, I really have no idea what I'm doing in the class and am pretty lost right now, but it's only day 2)  Any input or real life advice would be great. Thank you!!!


I'm SMing for an independent show for some friends of mine. It's really only for technicals and calling the show. However, this is also during the week of finals (for college) and I have 3 huge papers due that week. (I am working on the papers ahead of time) Technicals start the day my other show closes and I will have rehearsal/paper tech when strike is finished. Here is my problem... I still don't have the script. I'm supposed to be watching rehearsals starting later this week I haven't even read the dang thing yet. I have talked to the director and producer several times this week and the director (who is an egotistical actor) promised he would e-mail it to me *tomorrow* which the second time was friday. The director and I are supposed to meet and go through the script and talk about possible cues and things like that on Monday which would have given me a few days with the script. I guess what I'm asking is what should I do? Because it is independent no one is getting paid, and I'm really doing this as a favor, so I don't feel like I have the authority to throw a fit about this. But, I am taking time out of my crazy busy schedule to help out, so I feel like I should be at least able to have a request or two. Any ideas?

Thank you guys!!!


The Green Room / The Big "Thank You Notes" Thread!
« on: Apr 12, 2006, 02:08 am »
EDIT: Since we had six different conversations going on about thank you notes in various sections of the board, I've merged them all together and placed them on the board where they actually belong - the Green Room. - PSMKay, November 2013

The first show I worked on was Six Characters in Search of an Author. This is also the only show I have worked on. I remember the director/AD doing thank you notes and I was wondering if this is also usually done by the SM as well. I ASMed that show and the cast had about 26 people not including the production team. I'm just curious about standard practices for this. Any advice/ideas/suggestions would be great. Thank you all in advance :)


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